Leon : British newspaper The Telegraph named Steven Wilson '... the most successful British artist you've never heard of', that could just be true because the man is rather active. In addition to his solo work and his old band Porcupine Tree, he is also a well-known remixer of albums! For example, he has remixed famous albums from Rush, Yes, Marillion, and Opeth. Last year the musician went on tour to support his latest album 'To The Bone', I myself went to the concert at the AFAS Live in Amsterdam, for Lords Of Metal, and I liked it very much. Interestingly enough, I noticed that I started to listen to his work a lot more after the performance than before, sometimes the music comes more to life than on an album. In March 2018 Wilson played three evenings at the Royal Albert Hall in London, one of the most beautiful venues in the world, and this performance was beautifully captured and is being released under the name 'Home Invasion: In Concert At The Royal Albert Hall '.
The package contains two CDs, which together contains almost three hours of music, and a live DVD with the images of the concert, the sound is mixed in both stereo and 5.1. When I turned on the DVD I was immediately taken back to the concert I saw in Amsterdam, but then as if I were seated on the very first row. The images are beautifully displayed and shows the musicians as well as the gorgeous venue, this is really the view you want when you turn on a live DVD! The music quality is very high, as we can expect from Wilson, and it almost sounds like it was recorded in the studio. Visually and the audio technically are absolutely amazing and deserve the highest praise. The set-list includes a mixture of songs that were written by Wilson, much of which comes from the 'To The Bone' album but also from his previous solo albums, and, of course, also some from his old band Porcupine Tree. A big difference with this concert, compared to the one I’ve visited, is that guest singer Ninet Tayeb was actually on stage for the DVD recording. What a great vocalist she is! She looks shy and turns completely into the music, but that is actually quite charming and fits well with her performance. She participates on some songs that don’t have her vocals on the original recordings, she does so during 'People Who Eat Darkness' and also on 'Routine' which can be found as a bonus track on the DVD. The highlight of her contribution however is on the song 'Pariah', besides the fact that this is a beautiful song, Tayeb really puts on an amazing vocal performance here. Goosebumps! In addition, I must also mention that the musicians on the album are absolutely amazing, Craig Blundell on drums, Adam Holzman on keyboards, Nick Beggs on bass guitar, and Alex Hutchkings as a solo guitarist, Mr. Wilson couldn’t have wished for a better band.
Who would I recommend this album to? Fans who were present at a Steven Wilson concert last year, fans who unfortunately couldn’t be there, and progressive rock fans in general. When it comes down to live recordings, 'Home Invasion: In Concert At The Royal Albert Hall' is certainly one of the best out there, if not the best. It’s a very nicely polished product with little to criticize. Maybe there are people who will say that a live performance should be a bit rougher, or that there should be some edge to it, but that's not how Wilson's music works, and so also not on his live album. I would never label a live album as an album of the year, but if I would, this album would have a good chance. A mandatory album to have if you're a fan of Steven Wilson, and a must-see for the rest of the progressive rock fans.